Latin America & Caribbean

Colombian police seize cocaine stashed in bricks

Packets of cocaine are lined up after a seizure in Cartagena, Colombia
Image caption Police estimate the drugs could be worth almost $2m if sold in the United States

Police in Colombia say they have seized half a tonne of cocaine hidden in a shipment of bricks.

Officers said the drugs had a value of $1.7m (£1.1m) - and were intended for the US.

The cocaine was found stashed inside the cargo in the Colombian port city of Cartagena.

Police are investigating the construction firm behind the shipment, which they suspect was set up solely for the purpose of smuggling drugs.

The shipment was destined for Honduras, from where police believe the cocaine would have been smuggled to the United States.

Officers from Colombia's counter-narcotics police force and members of the US Drug Enforcement Administration had received a tip-off about the new construction firm.

When they tested the shipment, 13 out of 15 pallets of bricks proved to contain cocaine.

According to the United Nations World Drug Report, most of the cocaine seized in the US comes from Colombia.

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